The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown the production schedules and filming dates of many TV shows out of wack, and in some cases, has made continuing most series impossible until further notice. For that reason lots of shows have had to be postponed, and it was recently confirmed Season 22 of Big Brother would suffer from that as well.
CBS will reportedly not have fresh episodes of the hit reality series this summer, but does that mean Season 22 is on hold until 2021? That's a question many on the internet are asking, knowing that Big Brother is not the only show with production problems at the moment. In fact, CBS has had a vast number of its primetime programs' productions halted until further notice, and if work can't continue for months on end, it could seriously impact certain shows' readiness for the fall season, with Big Brother obviously falling into that category.
According to THR, the current plan for CBS this summer is to rely on repeat airings of primetime programming, which tend to do well in the ratings. That itself may already be stepping on Big Brother's toes if CBS does plan to lean harder on airing repeats all summer, potentially leaving the reality mainstay without its usual airtimes to run when production does resume. So then, if production starts back up on most shows sometime in the summer, there's a chance CBS will then just aim to get back to the normal swing of things by running what it originally planned for the fall schedule before the COVID-19 pandemic struck.
In this scenario, the summer favorite Big Brother would just pick back up with its usual time slot in the summer of 2021. That's not necessarily ideal for the fandom, but it might keep CBS from having to shake up its schedule more than already necessary in the face of this pandemic. While the series is an important show for CBS, summer shows usually air outside the fall cycle for a reason. When thinking that way, it wouldn't be surprising to believe that Big Brother might hold off on airing new episodes until 2021
The other side of this coin is that Big Brother could be the saving grace of CBS come fall if other heavily produced shows won't be ready in time. The Julie Chen-hosted reality show takes up three primetime slots during the summer hours, so if CBS is in need of quick-to-produce programming in the fall months, there's no better show than Big Brother to fill a few gaps. Honestly, the show could even fill more of that if need be, and it'd be interesting to see how the crew would edit the show if they had to broadcast more live feed footage than three hours a week.
There is a bit of evidence supporting Season 22 of Big Brother will still be happening in 2020. It comes from a recent tweet from the show's casting director, Robyn Kass, who was a bit frustrated with applicants sending in late submissions, and had to air out her thoughts on that on Twitter.
So, while this tweet did come before the report that Big Brother won't have new episodes to start summer, one has to wonder why Robyn Kass would still be complaining about the deadline for Season 22 applicants. It would appear the show is still sifting through who will appear on the season, and if that wasn't the case, the deadline to apply might eventually be extended, if the show wasn't going to return until early 2021 or later. Otherwise, why would it matter if applications were a couple days late at this stage?
Also, THR only mentioned that CBS didn't have a chance to begin production on Big Brother before the shutdown. 95% of what is seen on Big Brother is filmed when the occupants are in the house, and last season didn't even begin until late June. None of what has been said so far has been made official by CBS, so until they speak up, there's no overwhelming need to assume that Big Brother won't return until 2021, or even that it will miss its summer premiere (as unlikely as that may seem).
Anyone jonesing for Big Brother in the meantime can head over to CBS All Access which currently has all seasons of the reality series to binge. Also, be sure to stick with CinemaBlend for all the latest news happening in the world of television and movies as networks continue to make decisions on the future of their shows.